Written by Jay D Haughton Monday, Aug 14 2023
It was a bittersweet end to the Moose Jaw Miller Express’ season on Sunday night, as they fell to the Medicine Mavericks 14-7 in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference final.
Moose Jaw would tie the game at 6-6 in the third inning, but a three-run home run by Medicine Hat’s Andrew Savage would bring home the eventual game-winning run.
Miller Express head coach, Eric Marriott looked back on the record-breaking season that was, following Sunday’s loss.
“The season was successful,” says Marriott. “We didn’t win the final game of the season, which is our final goal, but we broke every record in the book. Whether it was Tweeter [Dawson Tweet] breaking the hit record, to us breaking the attendance and win record. It was successful in many aspects but with us not winning the championship, we failed.”
Dawson Tweet picked up a 36-game hitting streak, which broke the previous record of 28 games, along with tying the single-season hits record at 90. Moose Jaw also set a franchise record in wins with 38.
Thomas Soto, Julio Acosta, and Bobby Pokorney would all pick two hits apiece in the loss, while Zach Sigmon suffered the loss on the mound giving up four runs on five hits and having two strikeouts.
Medicine Hat was a thorn in the side of Moose Jaw all season, as they would finish the regular season with a 3-7 record against the Mavericks. That was the case in the East Division final.
“They’re scrappy and found a way to play up to us every time they came here. They didn’t give any pitches away and found a way to get on base, move each over and drive each other in. They did the little things better than us tonight.”
The Miller Express didn’t get off to the start they wanted to, as the second pitch of the game was taken over the fence in left field by Brody Gardner for the early 1-0 lead.
The offense for Medicine Hat didn’t stop there, as they scored another four runs in the inning to lead 5-0 heading into the bottom of the first.
Moose Jaw did respond in their half of the first inning, picking up three runs to cut the deficit to 5-3.
In the second inning, Brady Bean took Zach Sigmon deep to left-center field for Medicine Hat’s second home run of the game to extend their lead to 6-3.
Once again, Moose Jaw would claw their way back, as in the second inning, Thomas Soto would hit a one-out double to score Bobby Pokorney to make it 6-4. Nate Mensik hit a single into the outfield to score Thomas Soto and the score was 6-5.
After a scoreless top of the third, Julio Acosta crossed home plate to tie the game at 6-6, after an RBI single by Luke LaChance.
The fourth inning is when the game changed in favour of Medicine Hat, as Andrew Savage crushed a three-run home run to give the Mavericks the 9-6 lead.
They would tack on another five runs in the final five innings to put them out in front 14-7 and book their ticket to the Western Canadian Baseball League final against the Okotoks Dawgs.
That final series will begin on Tuesday night on Okotoks at 7:05 p.m.
With the season now finished for Moose Jaw, Marriott wanted to take a minute to thank everyone for a great year.
“I just wanted to say thank you to all the fans, players, the city, and the organization for trusting me and my staff with this amazing team. Everything we did this year we couldn’t have done it without them. Mark my words the Miller Express is on the map and 2024 will be an exciting one.”